"The Three Basic Rules For Surviving Divorce"

David V. Diggs, Esq. - Tuesday, May 4, 2021
2:51 pm

With nearly 34 years of family law practice, I’ve learned many tips along the way that may help clients facing divorce. My job is to help my family law clients navigate an emotionally taxing, potentially expensive and legally complex terrain. Along the way, I have divined three basic rules:

1.) Put the kids first
2.) Be nice
3.) Remember, this too shall pass

A lot more goes into the legal end of handing a family law matter. Following these rules will help anyone contemplating divorce to survive and perhaps even thrive. These are rules for clients to internalize and they in no way compromise my ability to aggressively advocate for them or achieve the desired outcome.

Most of the parents who I have represented follow rule one instinctively, although some need more reminding than others. Their first words to me are inevitably something like, “I'm just so worried about Tommy and Sarah.” Whatever the age of your children, your separation will upend their world and divorce will profoundly affect them. It might also improve their lives, particularly in homes that have become domestic battlefields.

Limiting as much as possible the deleterious effect of divorce is a collaborative process between parent and lawyer. Children may feel that they are to blame for their parents’ problems. Your responsibility, as a parent, is to explain to the children that both parents love them unconditionally, that they have nothing to do with your “adult problems” and both you and your spouse are committed to continuing to take care of them.

By applying rule one, you will take the first steps to fulfilling rule two. Be nice, be civil, even if the other side is incapable of such behavior. Being decent to your separating spouse does not mean that you will be a pushover. You must also be firm and honest. At this stage of the process, consider what your goals are in terms of custody, support and property division. Experienced counsel will explain the likelihood of success in these areas and plan for each phase of the process.

While divorce may bring an emotional whirlwind, rule three serves as an important reminder that your life will inevitably improve. Divorce too passes. Every one of my thousands of clients who has asked for a divorce has received one. The law has evolved from a fault-based system, looking to ascribe blame for the failed marriage, to one that recognizes that some wedded unions fail and the court’s job is to transition divorcing parents to their next phase of life, while taking steps to insure the best interests of children. Working together with the appropriate professional to identify issues, construct creative resolutions and preserve assets is the key to moving forward.

If you find yourself contemplating separation or divorce, you will have many questions. You should consult with an attorney who is familiar with this area of the law and who will assist you in making informed decisions. David Diggs is experienced in all facets of family law. If you need further information regarding this subject, contact The Law Office of David V. Diggs LLC, located at 8684 Veterans Highway, Suite 204, in Millersville, by calling 410-244-1171, or email david@diggslaw.com.